The electric pickup truck segment is growing, with battery-powered models like the Rivian R1T, Bollinger B1, GMC Hummer, and Ford F-150 all expected to make their debuts in the near future. However, it is the Tesla Cybertruck that will likely determine the success of this segment, and now we have some more information as to who will be taking delivery of the highly anticipated truck first.
According to a report from CleanTechnica, a longtime Tesla employee confirmed on Twitter that company employees will be the first to take delivery of the Cybertruck. While this isn’t official confirmation from Tesla themselves, this move would not be new for the EV manufacturer. After Tesla began production of the Model 3, employees took delivery of the vehicle as a cheaper alternative to more traditional R&D testing. Whether or not letting the people who work on the cars judge their quality has worked thus far is a contentious subject among Tesla fans and haters alike. After all, this practice doesn’t seem to have prevented the average quality of any Tesla model from not being an absolute mess.
Confirmed, $TSLA employees will be first to own a Cybertruck! ❤
— Starshiper (@Starshiper1) August 12, 2020
Despite being confident in stating employees will be the first Tesla Cybertruck owners, the Twitter user had no further updates regarding the truck’s production timeline. As of now, Tesla states that the range-topping truck is slated to begin production by the end of 2021, with the more basic single-motor model coming by year’s end in 2022. Production of the Cybertruck is slated to take place at the company’s new Austin, Texas facility.
The Tesla Cybertruck is a hugely important vehicle, not just for Tesla but for the industry as a whole. If the California-based automaker is able to encroach on the legacy automakers’s pickup sales, it will only further solidify its place as a genuine competitor. However, if the Cybertruck fails to attract any sort of real interest from buyers, we believe it’s safe to assume that the segment as a whole won’t be sticking around for too long.
The auto industry as a whole has otherwise been practicing a more sophisticated method of initial quality evaluations. General Motors, for example, disperses early builds of new products to employees via its Captured Test Fleet (CTF). Employees could be driving around a new vehicle, like the Hummer EV, for months before it’s time to produce salable vehicles.